Jun 29, 2002

Chautauqua has a Westerbeke 30 & I am having starter problems. I need information on removal & sequence of removing bolts being as least 2 of them go through the motor mount. Does engine have to be blocked for removal. Problem does seem to be electrical but cannot trace cause. Does anyone have prior experience with this?

Intermittently, when pushing start button, starter starts to engage but then the entire electrical system shuts down. Everything works again but it may be from me shaking the wires or just on it's on it's own.

My plan is to remove starter & have it checked out at a shop.

I would appreciate any advice.

Jun 30, 2002

Haven't had this problem yet but I have researched starter replacement without going thru Westerbeke (Lotsa money). If you need any of this info please let me know/

Date: Wed Jul 3, 2002

Just had my W-30 starter out for overhaul in 2001..... two bolts through the mount, two lags through the stringer, remove the mount, no blocks required... possibly a bar to jiggle the alignment as the starter is replaced.

Jul 3, 2002

Any info will be appreciated on removal & replacement of starter.

I'm going to chase down corrosion in the electrical wiring from the battery switches before removing the starter since power breakdown is intermittent.

Thank you.

Fri Jul 5, 2002

Starters often become intermittent in the solenoid contacts......

Jul 20, 2002

I do have that almost brand new W-30 starter available... have you located your problem yet?


Jul 20, 2002

I have replaced the starter of a Westerbeke 30. As I recall one of the mounting bolts is almost inaccessable as it is near the starboard, rear motor mount. That bolt is best accessed with a special kind of socket (I have forgotten the name) which is like an open-end wrench and extends at right angles from the drive shaft of the socket wrench.

I also had to back off the motor mount to have access, and then when the new starter was installed, return the same number of turns on the motor mount.

The starter is very heavy, and removing it is a two man job, I think. Because of the awkward position, I don't think any but superman can hold the weight of the starter in position. I arranged a sling of rope around the starter with two ends. The ends each came out a cockpit locker, one on each side. I took up the slack with winches which I have mounted on the mizzen for mizzen halyard and mizzen staysail halyard, but you could arrange some other way to control those lines if necessary. We had one man in the cockpit locker removing the bolts and one controlling the lines.

I think you may well have a bad starter. My local starter shop was able to fix mine, and also to provide a spare.


Jul 21, 2002

I believe the open ended ratchet socket you refer to is called a "Club Foot"

A wrench size1/2'' taped securely to a ratchet extension has gotten alot of

use aboard PickPocket.

Also works well for removing the fresh water heat exchanger.

Jul 21, 2002

The starboard side motor mount is easily removed if the lag screws into the stringer are first removed. The entire bracket slips out with almost no sagging from the engine position. The reinstallation may require a very slight lift with a crow bar and the holes all line up once the starter is re-installed.

The product Tef-Gel is a very effective antisieze compound for the cable nut on the B+ cable of the starter. spurs@spursmarine.com

Expensive but well worth the purchase. Now, the good news.... coat the prop, shaft and any underwater, bronze fitting with the stuff and kiss the marine growth goodbye.

Jul 21, 2002

Actually, you are very close to correct, the actual term is "crow's foot" but in any case the correct tool does a very much easier job than the 1/8 turn you get from flipping the open end wrench about 60 times for the starter. The manifold/heat exchanger is another story...

Jul 24, 2002

I avoided removing the screws holding the motor mount when I replaced

the starter. I doubt the motor mount is ever held as securely after

the lag bolts have been removed and then re-tightened.


Aug 12, 2002

Recently I remember a message about removing the starter without removing the motor mount. I neglected to save it, and now I need to remove my starter.

Please send it again.

Aug 12, 2002

Disconnect both cables to the start battery..... FIRST

Actually the easiest way is simply to remove the two lag bolts holding the engine mount bracket from the stringer/bed and the two that pass through the starter. A few taps with a hammer will encourage the bracket and the mount to slide aft, intact. (Tie a string on it as the bilge gets very hungry just about then.) The engine will not fall but stay very stable.

Remove the last bolt from the starter and generally the starter will then need a stiff whack to break it free of the bell housing. I suggest removing the battery cable and the solenoid wires from the starter once it is clear of the engine and into the starboard lazarette, near the battery shelf.

After re-installing the starter the engine may need a slight lift with a well-placed 2 X 4 to slip the engine mount bracket back into position.

The whole job to remove takes about 30 minutes, a hammer and an elf. Installing; about an hour, two beers and three small Band-Aids.

Aug 13, 2002

I am reluctant to remove the motor mount as I doubt that the motor mount will be held as securely when the lag bolts are re-inserted.

I was able to back off the adjusting nuts on the motor mount and then get the starter off. I would suggest that you have the starter held securely before removing the final bolt into the bell housing. I used a rope sling with one end leading up each cockpit locker to mizzen halyard winches, but any other way of securing it would be OK. The

winches make for easy and slight adjustments of the sling.

If you remember how many turns you backed off the nuts, you can replace the engine in its proper position.